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Meet the Baby Who Was Born Twice

Margaret Boemer went for a routine ultrasound 16 weeks into her pregnancy with her third child. She quickly found out that things were far from routine. "The doctor came in and told us that there was something seriously wrong with our baby and that she had a sacrococcygeal teratoma (tumor) . . . And it was very shocking and scary, because we didn't know what that long word meant or what diagnosis that would bring."

Although other doctors had advised her to terminate the pregnancy, her doctor told her about another possibility: fetal surgery. This option, though, would not be an easy road. Boemer said, “LynLee didn't have much of a chance. At 23 weeks, the tumor was shutting her heart down and causing her to go into cardiac failure, so it was a choice of allowing the tumor to take over her body or giving her a chance at life. It was an easy decision for us: We wanted to give her life.”

She was 23 weeks and 5 days pregnant, when the doctor performed the emergency fetal surgery. By this time, the tumor was nearly larger than her baby. Surgeons operated for about five hours removed the bulk of the tumor and then placed LynLee back inside the womb. Boemer was on bed rest for the remainder of her pregnancy. Despite her pain, she marshaled her strength and made it another 12 weeks to nearly 36 weeks--full term--when LynLee Hope was born, for the second time via C-section.

Boemer said, "It was very difficult.” But seeing her toddler smiling with her sisters, she added: "It was worth every pain." A year after LynLee had been born for a second time, Boemer said, “We’re amazed at how well she is doing. We know that God has great plans for her in the future to do something big.” She explained how little LynLee loved to sing, one of her favorites, “Jesus Loves Me."

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